Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani took some heavy shots at President Barack Obama's economic policies Wednesday while praising a man he feels can get at least New Hampshire going "in the right direction."
Giuliani joined Granite State gubernatorial hopeful Kevin Smith on a tour of several Hampton businesses Wednesday afternoon, including stops at the Galley Hatch and the 401 Tavern to exchange thoughts on industry, the job market and what Giuliani thinks Smith needs to do to secure the Republican nomination come the Sept. 11 primary.
"Kevin has the right ideas," said Giuliani. "This is something New Hampshire needs... It's time for a reform to get New Hampshire back to way it used to be, which was a place people came to because it was not taxed as much and it was not burdened as much as New York or Massachusetts or places like that. If you do that, I think the economy could just boom in a short period of time."
Video of Giuliani and Smith is attached to the right side of this story.
Smith and Giuliani also visited Foss Manufacturing while in Hampton Wednesday, speaking to roughly 50 employees about American industry. The duo also held a fundraiser in Salem — during which Giuliani called Vice President Joe Biden "dumb" — and spoke with nearly 70 people at Memories Ice Cream in Kingston before coming to Hampton.
The trip concluded Wednesday night with a private fundraiser and house party in Portsmouth.
Jamie Burnett, Smith's campaign strategist, said Smith and Giuliani have known each other since 2007, and he said Smith's political stances are "similar" to the former New York City mayor. Smith also backed Giuliani's unsuccessful 2008 presidential campaign.
Giuliani said part of the reason he is endorsing Smith — who is only the fourth gubernatorial candidate nationwide to have received an endorsement from Giuliani, according to Burnett — is because he supports individual he believe "have a tremendous opportunity to reform things and change things."
"I was the first Republican to support Chris Christie, and I was the first Republican to support Marco Rubio — pretty good choices, right?" said Giuliani, who said he "hear[s] everyone complaining" about the "extra fees" New Hampshire businesses have to pay. "I think Kevin will be like Chris Christie, like Marco Rubio. A real star."
Smith appreciated the praise from his Republican colleague, and he said with only weeks to go before the state primary his message seems to be "really resonating" with voters similar to the way it has with Giuliani.
"It's true a lot of these people start paying attention in the last two weeks," said Smith about undecided voters — a demographic his campaign is heavily targeting. "What it's going to take is our campaign to get the message out, and I think we have got our message out at the right time."